EDIS Case Study – Dept. of Veterans Affairs

We develop the software that VA doctors use to track their ER patients

The challenge:

Technatomy was tapped by the Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA) to develop a software product that tracks and manages the delivery of care to patients in VA hospital emergency rooms. This product, known as EDIS (Emergency Department Integration Software), records and tracks patients during their stay, giving medical staff the ability to get a full view of the treatment a patient has received. This product will eventually be used in all VA medical centers, both in the U.S. and abroad.

Our approach:

Taking on such an expansive software development effort is no small task. Before one piece of code was written, we worked with VA to develop and implement an Agile-based approach that addressed the development process. This approach combined elements of our MARQ method, established VA approaches that are applied to department software development efforts, and scrum-driven Agile development.

Our processes focused on transforming business, functional, and non-functional requirements into clear and measurable specifications. We worked within VA’s existing systematic approach to identify, organize, and document system and project requirements. This process let us prove quality as we worked, addressing evolving requirements and enhancing our ability to evaluate and refine our work processes and improve productivity.

The approach for the agreed upon process broke the work down into one-month sprints.  Within a sprint, a full, Agile Software Development Life-Cycle (SDLC) was covered in order to achieve operational readiness. Throughout a sprint all SDLC activities were executed ensuring that all entry and exit criteria were met. In some cases, where the feature is much larger than a one-month sprint, the feature was broken down into measureable components in order to track progress.

Technatomy’s development process focused on keeping the code simple, testing often, and delivering functional pieces of the application as soon as they were ready. The goal was to build upon small, functional business-approved components as the project progressed, as opposed to delivering one large application at the end of the project. Software design drove how the software tested, making sure every piece of code was adequately and logically implemented.

Currently, EDIS is in preparation for rollout into all VA medical centers.  As part of our proactive management approach to this project, Technatomy is working with VA to develop a comprehensive launch and integration plan.